Lock it up


Sometimes, especially when you live in a big-city apartment, packages mysteriously  grow legs and walk off. Last year Amazon began testing a low-tech solution to this problem in New York, Washington DC, and its hometown of Seattle: lockers. Now the tech giant is taking the service into the heart of the beast as these kiosk-like stations have begun to show up in San Francisco. The Wall Street Journal explains the program (not that you need a lesson in keys and locks, but maybe it’s been a while since you strutted the halls of your junior high):

Amazon's locker program works fairly simply. Customers who ship their item to a locker—typically in 7-Elevens, grocery or chain drugststores—are emailed a code after a package arrives that unlocks the door holding their merchandise. The lockers can hold only smaller items that weigh less than 10 pounds, such as books, DVDs or electronic devices like iPads. Users have several days to retrieve their merchandise.

That means if you wanted to get your hands on the JL421 Badonkadonk Land Cruiser/Tank, you’re out of luck.
Interestingly, the four states in which lockers are currently located are all states that already charge tax to Amazon orders. You might recall that tax-free items have been a major grumbling point for other retailers and a major selling point for Amazon. Setting up a locker in a state could mean that Amazon operates, at least in some small way, a business in that state, which means no tax-free goodies. 

About the author

Marc Sanchez is the technical director and associate producer for Marketplace Tech Report where he is responsible for shaping the sound of the show.
Log in to post Comments
With Generous Support From...